“Their marriage was a blanket of grace that had been so many years in the making.” Home for Christmas by Melanie Wilber.
I love that imagery. There’s something so cozy about curling up under a heavy blanket that provides warmth for the body and the soul.
I read the quote to Jerry and asked if it provoked any thoughts. He responded that grace develops over time. The longer we are married, the more grace abounds.
So true. It’s not the time alone that increases grace in our lives. It’s the way we handle the little moments that seem insignificant, the everyday occurrences, and the monumental memories or stories that grow bigger each time they are recounted.
I envision our marriage blanket of grace as a quilt top secured to a fuzzy soft velour backing. I wrap myself in the snuggly side and ponder the memories and meaning of each quilt piece.
I see a piece of the blouse I was wearing on our first face-to-face date.
There’s a fragment of his sweatshirt I wore camping one weekend. Oh, how silly I was waking him up in the middle of the night to ask if I could take it.
Satin and lace from the ring pillow made by a friend and carried by another friend at our wedding.
Fabric from the shirts I made for Jerry in our first year of marriage. And to think our friend who was years ahead of us in marriage told Jerry to enjoy them now because I’d never make another. Four years ago I made him two more, just to prove our friend wrong!
Tears fill my eyes as I see the pictures printed on muslin scattered throughout the quilt. Our first home together. Posing at the accordion statue downtown before we moved away. Minor to major league baseball games. Visits with family, cruises and beach vacations. Not only is each picture worth a thousand words, but every photo also coveys a bushel of grace.
Other pieces of the quilt came from event t-shirts we served in together.
Oh yes, that scrap is from a favorite dress that fell off the bed and got caught in wheelchair tires. I remember laying on the floor cutting it apart to free his wheels to turn.
Snippets of hospital gowns one of us donned remind me to be thankful for good health now.
A section of a guest bed sheet helps me recall the hundreds of people we have hosted in our homes.
A strip from one of Jerry’s wheelchair bags brings to mind that life is made up of day by day activities.
That corner of a kitchen towel is reminiscent of all the messes and memories we’ve made sharing meals.
There are many more pieces to remember, but not today. Instead, my focus turns to the stitching holding it all together.
Copious amounts of love, prayer and grace are in those threads to be sure. But the thin strand is strengthened by forgiveness, patience, acceptance, honesty, integrity, mercy, tears of joy and pain, growth, battling through loss, laughter, and celebrations. I wonder what we will add in this new year?
What are some pieces that comprise your marriage blanket of grace? I’d love to know.